The week of 22 – 26 January 2024 marks ‘family mediation week’. The aim is to raise awareness of the benefits to separating couples of exploring mediation, both to resolve arrangements for the children and their financial affairs, as opposed to via the court process. Mediation is known as alternative dispute resolution (“ADR”), which is conducted by a neutral third party (the mediator) who will assist the parties in facilitating discussions and helping them to achieve their separation in a more amicable manner.
Here at Lux, we encourage couples to explore mediation first, if we feel it is suitable in their circumstances. Mediation has many advantages, the main one being that it can help preserve the relationship between you and your ex-partner, compared to the stereotypical ‘adversarial’ nature of litigation. The preservation of a relationship is crucial for most couples, particularly when they have children together and need to navigate the arrangements for the children moving forward. Mediation can also prove to be cost effective for couples as it can avoid the need for protracted legal proceedings and the involvement of a court, which can also assist in matters being resolved more ‘quickly’ through mediation.
Alongside the benefits that mediation can have for separating couples, Resolution have recently introduced a new way for solicitors to advise separating couples, known as ‘Resolution Together’. With the necessary training, this new way of advising clients means that a solicitor would be able to advise couples together, rather than both having to seek advice from separate solicitors. It is hoped that this innovative new model of working will assist in reducing unnecessary conflict between individuals, tying in with the introduction of the new ‘no fault’ divorce law in April 2022. Our director, Lucy Morris, will be undertaking training in this area this year and hopes to be able to offer this service to clients by April 2024.
If you are separating from your partner or experiencing issues with regards to arrangements for the children and would like to explore mediation or Resolution Together, please do get in touch with us so that we can provide you with further advice on the options available to you.